|Dan McNeill hosts Second Town Hall about heroin epidemic|
A Drug Overdose Parent
Sharon Stauffer, a mother from Emmaus, had the most poignant advice. "If you're gut's telling you there's something wrong, there's something wrong." She lost her son Ryan to a heroin overdose in 2010. He dide with two needles stuck in his arm and eight empty bags of heroin at his side.
He started his drug use in 2001, smoking marijuana. Now most people don't progress from that to marijuana, bit he did because he is an addict. He had battled his addiction fro years, in and out of rehabs.
Three months before his death, friends noticed needle marks in his arms and he began crying. "I can't stop," he told them.
Before he overdosed, he made an appointment to see a counselor. She couldn't see him for a few days because one of her other clients had just overdosed and had died.
"I could be doing a lot better," he told her.
"A least you're not dead," said the counselor.
Three days later, he was.
Sarah McCann, 76 days clean
She began dating early, at 14, and began abusing heroin with her boyfriend.
In May of last year, she discovered that she had become pregnant. But doctors told her she would lose the baby, and she did. Depressed, she abused heroin even more. Then her grandmother, with whom she was very close, passed away. That made he rmore depressed, and the drug abuse continued.
Forty bags a day.
Things came to a screeching halt when her boyfriend of ten years died as a result of a heroin overdose.His parents blamed her and refused to allow her to attend the viewing. She was accused of supplying the fatal dose. "I wish I had been the one who gave it to him," she said. "Maybe it wouldn't have killed him.
The good thing about Sarah's story is that she's only 23 and has a long life ahead of her.
State Rep. McNeil, said he and another State Rep will be forming what he calls a "heroin caucus" to find ways to combat this epidemic. According to everyone there, this is going to be a banner year.
Parent Support Group
If you have a teenage child suffering from addiction or alcoholism, .this is a place for support and encouragement. This group meets every Thursday, 7 pm, at First Presbyterian Church of Allentown, 3231 Tilghman St, Allentown, PA 18104. For more information, contact Donna Jacobsen at DonnaJacobsen657@gmail.com
I will tell you about other support groups in upcoming posts.